2012 marks the bicentennial of the War of 1812. There are a lot of locations in my area in South-Western Ontario that saw many of the major battles of the war. Historical reenactors have been feverously planning large scale reenactments of this important milestone. The Truro Daily News list some of the best places to visit to take in the history of the War of 1812.
Travellers interested in military history usually think of Europe as the place to visit battlefields, but Canada has its fair share of them and as this year marks the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812, there is no better time to visit some of them.
The World Wars of last century are recent enough that they loom large in our memories, but it’s no understatement to say that the War of 1812 is every bit as important in Canada’s history as those great conflicts. In fact, if the outcome had been different, there would probably be no country called Canada.
The reasons for the war are diverse, but it was essentially an American effort to get rid of the British presence in North America. It began with an American invasion of Ontario and ended two years later soon after British soldiers burned down the White House and Capitol buildings in Washington, D.C.
To help you plan your War of 1812 explorations in Canada, here is a list of some of the most important sites to visit:
Find out about which sites to visit! War of 1812 bicentennial offers a wealth of historic sites to visit this year – Travel – Truro Daily News.
When Alexander Bartlet wrote in his journal on March 17, 1866 that in his Windsor courtroom an Irishman who cursed the Queen was facing sedition charges, he probably didn’t think his words would be printed 145 years later.
“I was trying to get him off for merely bringing him up for drunkenness but the jackass would not acknowledge he was drunk,” Bartlet wrote in his journal. “When the witnesses were brought up, he was clearly charged with sedition and remanded until Monday.”
Bartlet, a Scottish immigrant who came to Amherstburg in 1841 when he was 19, became Windsor’s magistrate and clerk after the town was incorporated when the railroad was built in 1854.
Story by Monica Wolfson – The Windsor Star
Laura Secord may have scrambled through thickets, forded streams and clambered up steep embankments, but the history buffs and outdoor enthusiasts who want to recreate her famous wartime trek 200 years later shouldn’t have to get their feet wet.
St. Catharines city councillor Peter Secord — who can claim the War of 1812 heroine as a distant relative — wants the city to build a footbridge over the headwaters of Twelve Mile Creek in west St. Catharines in time for a planned re-enactment of the Loyalist’s gruelling 32-km journey to warn British Lt. James FitzGibbon of an impending American attack.
Secord made the request at a St. Catharines city council meeting earlier this month, saying he had offered the group planning the re-enactment any help he could give them.
Story by Marlene Bergsma – The St Catherines Standard
A huge archeological dig that unearthed evidence of Toronto’s 19th-century railway boom is being plowed over to make way for condominium construction.
The dig, adjacent to the Bathurst Street bridge south of Front Street, uncovered the foundations of part of a giant cruciform-shaped building that in the 1850s housed the steam engine service and repair facilities of the Grand Trunk Railway. It also revealed some remaining portions of the Queen’s Wharf – a massive wooden dock that jutted into Lake Ontario – and a wood-lined channel that directed the flow of now-defunct Garrison Creek to the waterfront.
Story by Richard Blackwell – The Globe and Mail; Photo by Fredjk
Archeologists plan to begin a high-tech search today for lost graves at the Uncle Tom’s Cabin historic site in southwestern Ontario.
The site in Dresden is home to two historic cemeteries belonging to the British American Institute and the Henson family.
Although many tombstones are visible at the two cemeteries, their positions do not always precisely mark the location of the underlying graves.
Archeologists from the University of Western Ontario and the Ontario Heritage Trust will use ground-penetrating radar in their search of the site.
Josiah Henson was one of the founders of a settlement for fugitive slaves at Dresden in the 1830s and his name became synonymous with the character Uncle Tom in Harriet Beecher Stowe’s 1852 novel “Uncle Tom’s Cabin.”